Our Book Club Friday guest today is Marci Baun, an editor with Wild Child Press. Marci is here today to talk about the Freya’s Bower Dreams & Desires anthologies she edits each year. The proceeds from these anthologies, there are now four in the series, are donated to charity. -- AP
One of my favorite types of books to read is a themed anthology. These appeal to me for a number of reasons: I love to see what each writer creates from the theme, I love that each story can be read within an hour or less, I love the variety, and often I find new authors whose books I’ll buy. For me, it’s like opening a box of See’s chocolates, knowing that I’m going to love everything I eat, but not always knowing what I am going to get.
There is definitely a challenge to writing a story for an anthology like this. How do you keep it fresh and yet cohesive to the anthology? It’s a challenge, but one that, if you trust your characters, and you’ve done your research, is possible to attain.
Trust is a double-edged sword. Sometimes, it works, and, sometimes, it doesn’t. But it does make for interesting writing and reading because when left to her own devices, a character will always surprise you. There will be times she will make an unexpected decision, lead you right into a cul-de-sac, give you the bird, and walk away laughing because she knows now you have to find some way out of that impossible situation. In those instances, the delete key becomes your best friend. In others, she takes pity on you, saunters back with a bounce in her step and a twinkle in her eye, and proceeds to show you--with a brilliance that can only be genius--why she’s the character and you are merely her storyteller. Suddenly, the cul-de-sac is a boulevard, and you are traveling down it at warp speed without a seatbelt. And the story that at first appeared ho-hum turns into a modern day masterpiece, or at the very least, an entertaining tale with a satisfying end.
These are the types of stories you will encounter in our themed anthology Dreams & Desires. Since their inception, I have been the editor. And every year I am champing at the bit to see what the authors have cooked up. This year was no exception and certainly didn’t disappoint. From a Wild West bordello to a science fiction self-discovery to the chiming of a woman’s biological clock to urban fantasy and spicy M/M to paranormal and shape shifters, the stories of this anthology reveal the dreams and desires of nine very different people. Each story is a journey told by some interesting characters who were allowed to come out and play. Some are beautifully poignant, some made me laugh, some made me gasp, and all delighted me.
All of the net proceeds of these volumes in this series benefit a specified battered woman’s shelter or an organization that provides support to battered women’s shelters. The stories, cover art, proofreading, and editing are donated to ensure as much money as possible goes to the chosen charity. This year’s beneficiary is A Window Between Worlds (http://awbw.org/). This non-profit provides art therapy training and art supplies to battered women’s shelters free of charge.
Thanks for being our guest today, Marci! I hope many of our readers will check out the Freya’s Bower website and purchase one of the Dreams & Desires anthologies. -- AP